Tuesday, March 8, 2011

My first sewing project

Well, as this is a blog about things I have in production I thought I'd share with you the results of my first sewing project.

Actually, this isn't really my first sewing project as last year I made curtain linings and started a test run of a soft toy, an elephant called Phoebe. She's pretty much finished so I'll share some photos of that when it's done. She just needs a blanket on her back.

Anyway, mid-way through producing Phoebe, which I sadly had to put on hold for a few months pre-Christmas whilst I had all that extra work to do, my mother-in-law retrieved her sewing machine, which she had very generously loaned to me for a few months. So after much consideration and debate, and a half-price sale at Spotlight during which I put a super-duper computerised one-button-does-everything sewing machine on layby, I finally purchased my own.

It's utterly fab.

So I thought it'd better earn its keep and I went back to Spotlight's half price sale and purchased a load of "easy" patterns, mainly for Phoebe, but one for me too.

Then I went back (not during the half-price sale unfortunately) to purchase fabric and discovered why no one makes their own clothes any more. All the lovely fabrics I wanted to get were $10 a metre and I was a bit scared of making mistakes. I found a couple of slightly cheaper fabrics to start off with and then managed to pull an offcut out of the $1 a metre bin.

I got some books from the library, studied the patterns, traced them onto a roll of interfacing, which I used like tissue paper, watched youtube videos, washed the fabrics, ripped the fabrics to find the grain, pressed the fabrics, pressed the patterns (! before tracing them. I had no idea you had to do that but I suppose it makes sense), pinned the traced patterns from the easiest of the easiest patterns (or at least what seemed to be as such to my untrained eye) to the el cheapo fabric, and finally I was ready to cut out and start to sew. It didn't really take me that long, but then it is a bit of a no-frills design. Except for the frill at the bottom of course.

So really, what this is, is my first dressmaking project (given the curtain lining and Phoebe the Elephant). I didn't have a very cooperative model. In fact I had to give her an iPhone before she'd even sit still and stop showing me her bum. Models are so hard to work with these days.

Anyway, here it is. And the good news is, Phoebe loves it.

Oh, and an interesting thing I learnt, when threading a needle, don't moisten the thread. Instead moisten the eye of the needle. The moisture draws the thread in. It works. Of course, I don't need to faff around trying to get my tongue over the needle of my sewing machine because it pretty much threads itself.

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